About anthrax

Anthrax is a disease caused by a type of bacteria known as Bacillus anthracis. These bacteria can survive for a long time as spores.

Anthrax is very rare in Australia. There have only been 3 cases of the disease occurring in humans since 2001. However, it still occurs in grazing animals in many countries. In Australia, this mainly happens in the ‘anthrax belt’, which runs from western New South Wales into part of Victoria.

Disease type: 
Zoonoses
Vaccination available under NIP: 
No
Notifiable disease: 
Yes

Prevention, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment

For information about prevention, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment, see healthdirect's anthrax page.

Surveillance and reporting

Anthrax is a nationally notifiable disease.

We monitor cases through the National Notifiable Diseases Surveillance System (NNDSS).

For more on anthrax in Australia, you can search Communicable Diseases Intelligence

Related programs

Our Security Sensitive Biological Agents Regulatory Scheme relates to anthrax.

Last updated: 
14 June 2022